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Sohn, L. (1985). Anorexic and Bulimic States of Mind in the Psycho-Analytic Treatment of Anorexic/Bulimic Patients and Psychotic Patients. Psychoanal. Psychother., 1(2):49-56.

(1985). Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, 1(2):49-56

Anorexic and Bulimic States of Mind in the Psycho-Analytic Treatment of Anorexic/Bulimic Patients and Psychotic Patients

Dr. Leslie Sohn

This paper discusses the relationship of bulimic and anorexic states of mind, and their interchangeability as manifested in the transference. The anorexic making bulimic-like greedy demands upon his/her objects. The bulimic showing all the qualities manifestly presented by the anorexic, an appetiteless approach to possibilities and peculiar searches in a non-specific fashion for satisfaction. Clinical material for discussion is presented from the ‘analysis of three patients — one of whom was psychotic.

The paper attempts to show how in the transference in the true anorexic and bulimic, attacks are directed towards the awareness of the meaningful and intended specificity and function of all objects, so that any specific function can be mis-directed or nullified by the patient. The paper shows how some of these characteristics can appear as well in the treatment of borderline cases and affect the countertransference of the therapist.

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